“Yoga is not just repetition of few postures – it is more about the exploration and discovery of the subtle energies of life.” – Amit Ray
Yoga has all kinds of health benefits. It’s good for your flexibility, your heart, your mind and your soul. Yoga can help heal all kinds of ailments, both physical and mental. People who have anxiety or depression often report that doing yoga and learning how to breathe correctly with the complicated poses have helped them out immensely.
But there’s one more secret benefit to yoga that a lot of people don’t know about, and that’s how it can benefit your relationship. That’s right – researchers now have solid reasons as to why you should be doing yoga with your partner.
“A couples’ yoga experience can serve as a kind of mini ‘retreat’ or ‘workshop’ to strengthen a relationship. Rather than just going to a class and practicing next to each other, couples’ yoga requires couples to really pay attention to each other in the moment and work together toward common goals,” says psychotherapist and certified yoga instructor Julia Lehrman.
Here Are 5 Reasons Why You Should Do Yoga With Your Partner
1. Yoga connects your body and mind
One of the main benefits of yoga is to connect your mind and your body. Oftentimes we think of our bodies as just vessels without really understanding that our bodies are also ourselves. Yoga helps close that bridge and connect mind and body.
“Mind-body exercise is about creating wellness. It’s about cultivating your health by restoring balance… You start to uncover your body’s own wisdom,” says author Shirley Archer.
In order to develop good relationships with people, especially romantic ones, we need to have a solid connection between our bodies and our minds. When we only engage with other people with one or the other, our relationships tend to suffer and be shallow. Yoga will help you have a more rounded and complete relationship.
2. Yoga makes you more sensitive
When you engage in yoga, it can help increase the sensitivity that you feel to both yourself and the world around you. You will learn to listen to your body and your mind, and engage with your thoughts and feelings in a more open and honest way. When you nurture that relationship with yourself, you will inevitably be able to nurture your relationships with others as well. Doing yoga with your partner means the both of you will be able to have more open and honest relationships with yourselves as well as with one another.
3. Yoga helps you live in the present
Living life in the past is something that a lot of people tend to do without meaning to. They hold onto past relationships and old grudges and things that are no longer happening, but still allow them to affect them.
“We’re living in a world that contributes in a major way to mental fragmentation, disintegration, distraction, decoherence,” says Buddhist scholar B. Alan Wallace.
When you do yoga, it helps you live your life in the present instead of hanging on to the past. With yoga, you have to focus on your body, on your breathing, and on your balance. Using these things teaches us to be present in the moment. When both partners engage in yoga together, you’ll both be present in the moment and be able to connect with each other more fully.
4. Yoga lowers your defenses
Yoga is all about releasing tension and energy that gets built up in our bodies. When we open ourselves and release that tension, our defenses lower and allow us to engage with the people around us in a healthier manner. We have all known people, or perhaps been that person, who is always withholding themselves from their partner for fear of getting hurt. That can cause a lot of tension in the relationship.
Thankfully, doing yoga together can repair those issues between partners and strengthen your connection. Relationships that have one or both partners who have raised defenses often do not last, so yoga can really benefit those relationships.
“Doing yoga with your partner is one way of practicing communication with each other, since you have to be attentive to your partner’s body in each pose you do together. For many couples, it’s a way of deepening the connection between two people and being present with each other,” says Aimee O’Connor for Huffington Post.
5. Yoga opens your heart to love
Many people who haven’t tried yoga don’t know that yoga can teach you how to feel in new and different ways. Because there’s so much focus on opening and releasing when it comes to yoga, connecting with your emotions and opening your heart to love is one of the biggest benefits when it comes to doing yoga.
“In life we go through many things… a wide array of emotional hurts. Over time, these experiences cause us to put up little walls around our hearts. We believe that if we can just protect our hearts behind these walls, that we will avoid getting hurt, so we slowly begin to close off, adding layer upon layer over our vulnerable hearts. Yoga helps us to heal and strengthen the heart, in both the physical and the metaphysical sense,” says yoga instructor Charity Poole.
When you focus on doing yoga with your partner, having your heart open to love can be extremely important to keeping your relationship strong. Yoga often crosses into spirituality in a way that a lot of people don’t really understand. But, if you put the effort in, you’ll find that your heart and soul open up to love in a way that you’ve never experienced before.
Yoga isn’t just a new age gimmick. It is actually an exercise that has a lot of basis in health and physical fitness. Not only that, but many other cultures use it to help with mental and spiritual health. When you’re in a relationship, doing yoga together is a great way to make your relationship stronger and connect with one another.